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Back to school

JBLM school liaison valuable resource for parents, students

Northwest Guardian

Published: 01:03PM August 29th, 2013

As a new school year approaches, Joint Base Lewis-McChord parents and students have a valuable resource in JBLM’s school liaison office, which can assist military families with a number of back to school issues.

The SLO can help support families through their transition to JBLM by providing information, making referrals and coordinating with local school districts about specific needs. Children living on base will attend Clover Park District schools. Off-base residents can register their children in person at their local school districts. To register, parents must provide proof of residency (a rental lease or utility bill with current name and address), the child’s immunization records, contact information of last school attended and a copy of orders assigning their service member to JBLM.

Families who live off-base who wish to send their children to school on JBLM may request a waiver through Child, Youth and School Services at the central registration building at 2295 Bitar Ave. on Lewis Main or 578 Lincoln Blvd. on McChord Field. There is often a waiting list. Regardless of residency, all parents are welcome to enroll their children in the before-and-after school program offered by CYSS. For more information, call Parent Central Services at 253-966-2977.

Stay safe as school starts

The U.S. Department of Transportation recently released traffic-safety rules for parents and kids to remember when going back to school.

Children riding buses should always listen to the bus driver and be kind to other riders. Pedestrians and other drivers should know the meaning of a school bus’s yellow flashing lights (preparing to stop) and red flashing lights (bus has stopped for children to get on or off the bus). Motorists must stop and wait until the red lights stop flashing and the extended stop sign is withdrawn before moving their vehicle again. Passing another vehicle is never allowed in a school zone.

Kids who walk to school should know the route and recognize the importance of never accepting a ride from anyone while walking to and from school. Always walk on the sidewalk or along the side of the road. Remember to stop and look both ways before crossing the street, and cross in front of cars. Be sure you can see a car’s driver; that also means the driver can see you.

If children will be riding bicycles to school, make sure the brakes and tires are in good working condition. Bicycles should always travel in the same direction as car traffic, and bicyclists must obey all traffic signals and signs. A protective helmet must always be worn when riding a bicycle. Choose the safest route of travel between school and home.

If parents are driving their children to school, everyone in the car must buckle their seat belts. Always observe the speed limit, especially in a school zone. Watch out for children walking or biking to school when backing out of a driveway or leaving a garage; think of the personal safety of bikers and walkers first. Make sure when children exit a car that clothing with drawstrings and book bags with straps don’t get caught in the doors or seats.

Public school directory

Pierce County

Bethel School District

Serving: Spanaway and Graham

Main office address: 516 176th St. E., Spanaway

Phone: 253-683-6000

First day of school: Sept. 4

Website: www.bethelsd.org

Clover Park School District

Serving: Tillicum, Lakewood and JBLM

Main office address: 10903 Gravelly Lake Dr. SW, Lakewood

Phone: 253-583-5000

First day of school: Sept. 3

Website: www.cloverpark.k12.wa.us

Franklin Pierce School District

Serving: Tacoma

Main office address: 315 129th St. S., Tacoma

Phone: 253-298-3000

First day of school: Aug. 27

Website: www.fp.k12.wa.us

Peninsula School District

Serving: Gig Harbor and Key Peninsula

Main office address: 14015 62nd Ave. NW, Gig Harbor

Phone: 253-530-1000

First day of school: Sept. 4

Website: www.peninsula.wednet.edu

Puyallup School District

Serving: Puyallup

Main office address: 302 2nd St. SE, Puyallup

Phone: 253-841-1301

First day of school: Sept. 4

Website: www.puyallup.k12.wa.us

Steilacoom Historical School District

Serving: Steilacoom and DuPont

Main office address: 510 Chambers St., Steilacoom

Phone: 253-983-2200

First day of school: August 29

Website: steilacoom.k12.wa.us

Tacoma School District

Serving: Tacoma

Main office address: 601 S. 8th St., Tacoma

Phone: 253-571-1000

First day of school: Sept. 4 (kindergarten starts Sept. 9)

Website: www.tacoma.k12.wa.us

University Place School District

Serving: University Place

Main office address: 3717 Grandview Dr. West, University Place

Phone: 253-566-5600

First day of school: Sept. 3

Website: www.upsd.wednet.edu

Thurston County

North Thurston School District

Serving: Lacey

Main office address: 305 College St. NE, Lacey

Phone: 360-412-4400 First day of school: Sept. 4

Website: www.nthurston.k12.wa.us

Olympia School District

Serving: Olympia

Main office address: 1113 Legion Way SE, Olympia

Phone: 360-596-6100

First day of school: Sept. 4

Website: osd.wednet.edu

Tumwater School District

Serving: Tumwater

Main office address: 419 Linwood Ave. SW, Tumwater

Phone: 360-709-7000

First day of school: Sept. 4

Website: www.tumwater.k12.wa.us

Yelm School District

Serving: Yelm and McKenna

Main office address: 107 First St. N, Yelm

Phone: 360-458-1900

First day of school: Sept. 3

Website: www.ycs.wednet.edu